Saturday, August 31, 2013

Pretty Pansy

I finished my Mickey and the Fireman cross stitch! Aside from the framing. Of course, I grabbed a few of my new! shiny! small kits to do immediately after. Here's one now:

Daydreams (by Dimensions) kit 72826 Pretty Pansy Blossom

The back, I always love looking at the backs of cross stitches:

I got this kit from the clearance bin because the wire hanger was missing. I used some crafting wire tripled to hang it. Hopefully it will hold well, I would hate to have it fall and shatter. That would not be a particularly good gift!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mail Call

Opening packages with cats is always an adventure. I received a Knit Picks order and an order from Adagio Teas yesterday, and my little helpers were happy to assist.

They get excited by boxes. Very excited.

They inspect everything new when it comes in the house.


The black one is a connoisseur of fine yarns. I've had some Cascade Silk Heritage and some Lorna's Laces Solemate on the table for a week or two. The Cascade hasn't been touched, but the more expensive Solemate has gone missing a couple of times. She's checking for pure wool or her absolute favorite, alpaca.

She even helps with trash removal.

Of course, this is the part they've been waiting for. New fort to play with!

If you hadn't already noticed, yes, this month the yarn count is bad. Very bad. I blame everyone who keeps having babies. Adorable babies that will look even more adorable in the blanket, sweaters, and cardigan the yarn will eventually become!

Friday, August 9, 2013


I'm about 20% done with my August Camp Loopy shawl and I keep wondering if the gauge is too loose. It's lace, so a loose gauge isn't a bad thing, but I think the color swirl may get lost or muddled if I keep it so loose. Since I keep wondering, I'm pretty sure I should just rip it out and start again on US4s. I like it scrunched up on the needles, like in the photo, which means I probably won't when it's blocked out.

It went fairly quickly the first time; this was just a couple of hours of work. Now to rip and re-do!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


I pulled out my cross stitches to photograph them, and then the local Jo-Ann's got some of the newer Disney Dreams cross stitches in and had their Coupon Commotion. I really, really, really want to open a new one! I realized how close Mickey and the Fireman is to completion, and the pillowcases were close too. Instead of spinning, I used the bit of time I could be spinning to cross stitch. Oops!

The pillowcase is done, though I can't seem to get the last couple rust stains out and it's not a particularly well-done specimen:

Mickey and the Fireman is extremely close and probably will be finished this month:

Two of four pages of pattern 100% complete, just some glow-in-the-dark thread sections and backstitching with in dark brown left to go. I'm thinking I'm going to gift it to my grandfather since he was a fireman, but I don't know if it's something they'd want hanging in their house - maybe I'll ask my grandmother first to see if they have space and want it. I've spent a LOT of time on it and I'd hate for it to be hidden away in the basement at their house when I can hang it here.

I may give in to my new-kit desires once I finish this one. I have some small kits that have been sitting in the stash forever. It won't be as satisfying to start in on as the large Disney kits, but once I finish Mickey and the Fireman I will have only a large and a medium project in progress and can start a small one with a clear conscience.

There's three Reflections kits, a Daydreams kit, and a handful of ornaments that all fit in the "small" category on the right followed by some medium holiday designs.

On the other end, there's the medium to huge Disney kits roughly from smallest to largest. The Art of Disney kits are in anticipated stitching order while the Disney Dreams are all basically the same size and same amount of work so I'll just grab whichever strikes my fancy when I get to them.

I think I may start with the Reflections Pansy kit and work through the small ones from there. Or go back to the in-progress Disney kit. Or spin. Or...

Monday, August 5, 2013

August Adventure

I'm heading off to see some family for a week. That's a car ride, a plane ride, a car ride, probably one or two other longer car rides, and then back again. I plan to do some work on some papers I'm writing, but of course, there will be yarn! I always bring at least one more project than I can reasonably work on in the time I'm gone, and what I consider reasonable to work on is often proven to be unreasonable at best. There's usually a few yarn-based projects and a cross stitch. The large cross stitches I often bring wouldn't be finished even if I brought nothing else with me and got stranded somewhere for a week with nothing to do but stitch - as I said, unreasonable at best, but more often verging on insane. This time, here's the plan:

Camp Loopy Project #3, an In the Pink shawl out of Schoppel-Wolle Lace Ball in Charisma. I'm really excited for this shawl, I think it will turn out excellently! I just need to finish it by the end of the month, and I've completed Camp Loopy 2013.

Baby blankets galore!

I have quite a few people who rate baby blankets having babies this fall/early winter. Time to get cracking! I plan to take yarn for two blankets, one knit and one crochet. Since I almost certainly won't finish two blankets, I think I'll bring just enough yarn for the white one, leaving the extra skeins at home, and the smaller of the two green skeins. I really don't think I'll end up breaking into the fresh pound of yarn and a pound of aran weight yarn is not a small thing!

Travel Sock. Always have a travel sock. This one is a bit large. A knee-high sock can be a bit much to carry around and pull out if you're just waiting in line or something. At this point, it's not too far along so should be a nice, small travel size for at least this trip.

Cross stitches. I plan to bring the nearly-finished "Mickey and the Fireman" and one of the other two in-progress kits. I'm itching to bring the other Art of Disney kit, "Past, Present, Forever", but the ornament kit has nice little chunks to work on. I may end up bringing both and working on neither.

Realistically, my In the Pink shawl may be enough for the entire trip. Realism has never been my forte.

Thursday, August 1, 2013


I finished the 4 skeins of yarn in a modified Metro. I need five to complete the modifications the way I want them.

Nominally, it is complete, and I will probably wear it a couple of times as-is before lengthening the sleeves. 880 yards down, the only thing I knit in July, and it really isn't done. Looks like Camp Loopy Project #2 is bad luck for me - last time I did Camp Loopy I knit the first sock too small and still haven't re-knit it to fit. At least this one is wearable as-is!

About halfway through the first sleeve, I started thinking I definitely had enough yarn. Luckily, I also have enough experience with Knitters' False Optimism (TM) to know that it was time to (a) take out the yarn scale, and (b) use it! At roughly 5 grams of yarn per 2" of knitting, I will be at least 30 grams short of my desired goal, possibly more because the ribbing eats up more yarn than stockinette. For now, it will remain at a more pattern-accurate 3/4 sleeves. I'm not counting the yarn as a negative though, not until it's done to my satisfaction.  Which means the graph has gone up:

This month, I pretty much failed on all fronts - not enough yarn to really finish this project, cross stitched instead of spun (more on that soon), but at least I did purchase the yarn for my next project and I finished two cross stitches! Along with a creeping-past-60-page paper at work (single spaced, all this month!), that's not too bad.